Last weekend we joined forces with a British family and walked up to Packhorse Hut in the Port Hills (Banks Peninsula, just 30 minutes from our house)….except in lieu of horses, we had PackDaddies. Emma carried their youngest, William, I carried Milo, Joe and Amelia used their own two legs, and the Daddies (Ian and Jeremiah) carried the rest.
Look Amelia, if you stand on tip-toe you can just see the roof of the hut. We’re almost there! Amelia was so proud when she got to the hut without any Whinging (Complaining, in British).
This hut came with resident games! Milo was nice and gentle with Baby William. For some reason he views kids his own age and older as competition, but if I tell him that someone is a baby, they usually get special no-pushing treatment from Milo.
The Banks Peninsula is wonderfully accessible from Christchurch and you quickly get out into a rural feel (we started our hike in a sheep pasture). That pine forest in the background is being logged and we could hear cattle mooing way up from the valley, so it’s not wilderness, but it’s a wonderful backyard to Christchurch.
The hut sits up on the crater edge of an old extinct volcano, the center of which is now Lyttelton Harbor. I wish I could see a fast-forward film of what it used to look like when it was active until now, grassy and eroded.
Breakfast Mayhem! Yum! It’s impressive that this stone hut built in the early 1900’s has survived all the earthquakes. Only the chimney toppled.
The kids all stayed up way too late playing Quiddler and were consequently tired the next day, but they had fun.
Tea with a View. And I even got to drink it while it was hot, this leisurely morning.
Pretty posh spot for a stretch! Trail runners started arriving around 8:30, touting camelbacks and Icebreaker merinos, two hours into their morning exercise. The hut makes a nice destination for both walkers and runners.
Everyone did some climbing!
Milo’s ready and waiting, new backpack filled with survival gear (two rubber duckies, a bug catcher and a tennis ball).
Over the style and down the hill, we’re on our way home.
Milo is thrilled to walk, and thankfully our friends were happy to dawdle along. Joe there in the background is becoming an expert bee catcher.